Making the decision to get married is a big deal, and popping the question to your girlfriend should be a monumental event in your life. If you’re like many men who are hoping to get married, you will find yourself wondering how in the world you are supposed to come up with several thousand dollars to buy an engagement ring. While diamonds may be a girl’s best friend, it’s up to you to find an affordable engagement ring that matches the one she’s had in mind all these years and what fits in your budget.
Choose The Right Shape
Diamonds that are cut in a round shape are the most popular diamonds used in engagement rings, and also happen to be the most expensive per carat. Diamonds that are cut in an oval, marquis or pear cut can be considerably cheaper. Because these cuts carry more weight up top, they also appear to be bigger than they really are. Avoid radiant cuts and princess cuts if you are looking to protect your wallet. These cuts have more weight at the bottom of the diamond, which makes them look smaller.
Buy Generic Rings
Many famous jewelers have the bragging rights for certain cuts and designs of diamond rings. Because of this, you will pay close to twenty percent more for one of these cuts from a famous jeweler. Remember that when you purchase these rings, you’re paying more for the name and not necessarily a higher quality diamond and setting.
Lab diamonds are also available for a considerably less cost. Synthetic diamond rings look the same as mine grown diamond rings, but can lighten up the final bill considerably.
Buy The Stone Loose
Buying a diamond from an independent wholesaler can save you quite a bit of money. It more than makes up for the cost of having the diamond put into the perfect setting. Rather than picking out a specific ring, let your girlfriend pick out a diamond and a setting and have the two combined.
Pick A Smaller Setting
You can easily save money by picking a setting that is less expensive or smaller. Platinum tends to be more expensive, and it’s often hard to tell the difference between a platinum ring and a white gold ring. White gold is about half the price of platinum, and can almost pass for the real thing. With white gold, you’re still getting a high quality ring, but you’re cutting the price almost in half.
Try A Different Stone
If your girl isn’t picky about the stone in her ring, try something different. It’s becoming increasingly popular to choose a colored stone for the centerpiece of an engagement ring. You can buy a flawless imitation diamond for a fraction of what you would pay for a diamond. Adding a colored stone to an engagement ring also adds a unique quality to the piece, and you can guarantee that it’s a one of a kind.
The fun part of getting married is often tempered by thoughts of how much everything is going to cost. This doesn’t have to be so with the purchase of the engagement ring. Make the process fun and not stressful by using these ways to save money on your purchase.
Pam Buttikofer is a co-founder of Imperfect Women. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband of 36 years and enjoys spending time with her husband, sons and her lovable pups.